US House Speaker Pelosi Lands In Taiwan, Defying China Warnings: 10 Points

Nancy Pelosi was seen emerging from the flight.

US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has landed in Taiwan amid escalating threats from China over the visit. Her flight landed in Taipei as China closed the east coast airspace around Xiamen. Reports said Chinese fighter jets have crossed Taiwan strait.

Here are the top 10 points in this big story:

  1. After landing, Nancy Pelosi tweeted: “Our delegation’s visit to Taiwan honors America’s unwavering commitment to supporting Taiwan’s vibrant Democracy… Our visit is one of several Congressional delegations to Taiwan — and it in no way contradicts longstanding United States policy, guided by the Taiwan Relations Act of 1979, U.S.-China Joint Communiques and the Six Assurances.”

  2. Beijing, which regards Taiwan as part of its territory, has promised “grave consequences” for the visit by the highest-ranking US official in over 25 years.

  3. “The US is taking provocative actions that could escalate tensions across the Taiwan Straits. It must take full responsibility. The US would surely bear responsibility and pay price for undermining China’s sovereignty and security interests,” a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson was quoted as saying by the local media.  

  4. The US has said it would not be intimidated by what it called Chinese “sabre rattling”. Washington officially has no diplomatic relations with Taiwan but is bound by US law to help the island defend itself.

  5. The US C-40C aircraft — said to be Ms Pelosi’s flight to Taiwan though there was no official confirmation —  circled around and approached Taiwan from the Philippine Sea.  

  6. The local media reported that Chinese fighter jets had crossed Taiwan strait, which was closed to traffic by China. “China’s Su-35 fighter jets are crossing the Taiwan Straits,” state TV CGTN reported.

  7. Four US warships, including an aircraft carrier, were positioned in waters east of Taiwan on what the US Navy called routine deployments.

  8. Taiwan’s foreign ministry stayed silent about the visit. But the Taiwanese foreign minister received Ms Pelosi at the airport, where hundreds flocked to see her. The tallest building in Taipei was lit up as a mark of welcome.  

  9. Live television images showed Ms Pelosi being greeted on arrival by Taiwan’s foreign minister Joseph Wu.

  10. The furor around Ms Pelosi’s visit risks straining relations throughout the region as governments confront the reality of ratcheting tensions between the world’s two largest economies.  Both the US and China have sent diplomats to engage with Southeast Asian leaders.